Wednesday, April 9, 2014

Houston Author Event Spotlight: Rebecca Donovan

Optimism seeps from every pore of my body. I truly believe what’s supposed to happen… will. In that regard, I don’t know how to give up; it’s not part of my biological make-up.

I’m a passionate (and some would say overly enthusiastic) individual. I learn by doing (and have been burned more times than I’d like to admit). But I will always throw my entire self into whatever I do – fail or succeed.

I think this is evident when I write. I leave nothing behind, and spill it all out onto the pages. I give it all to my readers – love it or hate it.

The path I’m on is very often my own. Sometimes I veer off at the sight of something more interesting or captivating and get caught in the vines and thorns in order to experience the beauty and intrigue others often pass by. And I always meet the most interesting people along the way…

 "No one tried to get involved with me, and I kept to myself. This was the place where everything was supposed to be safe and easy. How could Evan Mathews unravel my constant universe in just one day?"

In the affluent town of Weslyn, Connecticut, where most people worry about what to be seen in and who to be seen with, Emma Thomas would rather not be seen at all. She’s more concerned with feigning perfection while pulling down her sleeves to conceal the bruises - not wanting anyone to know how far from perfect her life truly is. Without expecting it, she finds love. It challenges her to recognize her own worth - but at the risk of revealing the terrible secret she’s desperate to hide.

Reason to Breathe is an electrifying page turner from start to finish, a unique tale of life-changing love, unspeakable cruelty, and one girl’s fragile grasp of hope.

Emma’s struggle with an abusive home life came to a heart pounding conclusion in the final chapters of "Reason to Breathe". Now everyone in Weslyn knows Emma’s secret, but Carol can’t hurt Emma anymore. 

Some are still haunted by the horror of that night, and some must face the repercussions of their choices. Fans of Rebecca Donovan’s debut novel will discover there’s still much to learn about Emma’s life.

Emma leaves Weslyn and everyone in it behind to attend Stanford University, just as she always intended. A shell of her former self, she is not the same girl. She is broken, and the only way that she’ll be whole again is through forgiveness. 

Emma must find a way to forgive herself and recognize her own worth before she can receive the love she deserves. This final installment will have readers holding their breath until the very last page.

Becca: Has there been one book that has impacted your life or has stayed with you that really was pivotal for you.
Rebecca:  I don't go back and try to write like it but I that profound, the human story behind it and just the philosophical end of it is, His Dark Material by Philip Pullman. I don't know if you have ever heard of The Golden Compass, so that's part of the trilogy. He just has this great, kinda like Tolkin or C.S. Lewis, they have this sort like religious or human spiritual side to it and I just love the thought behind it. 

Becca: In writing your books, was there a character that you just really had a hard time molding or you just had these times where you were like I just don't know where this character is going?
Rebecca: Well I had a hard time getting What if? started, my new book coming out this fall because I was writing from a 20 year male's point of view and just finding his voice...I had to start over five times in order to find him. Because it is counter-intuitive, I was writing a male's point of view and me as a female, who is really a sixteen year old female at that, so it was really hard for me to be so descriptive and observant and not be reflective because he is not sensitive, he's not like Evan or like some of the other guys that kinda know themselves. He's just a guy. And that was not easy. I wanted him to be authentic, I want you to feel like he's a guy that you can sit down and have a beer with. I just want him to feel real to you and be like oh yeah...I know this dude. Yeah know? He's just a guy.  So creating him was really challenging.

Becca: So was there a scene in any of your books that you wrote that was really hard for you to write?
Rebecca: Yeah the scene of Emma walking into the ocean, I had to write that a couple of times. And actually Jenn Sterling helped me with that. I was out in California in Santa Barbara, and I literally had to sit and just watch the ocean and kinda like feel it. And I wrote that several times to capture that emotion just right because it is such a desperate moment. A pivotal part of the book that I needed it to feel that way.

Becca: If there was one book that you would recommend for anyone to read, which would it be?
Rebecca:  How to Kill a Rockstar (Tiffanie DeBartolo). It's amazing. It's brilliantly written. It's just so smart, just love that book. 


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